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Holy Trakball, Batman!


Amityville315
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I gotta say, the 5200 Trakball rocks when you get it working right. I managed to pick up two of them and cobble the parts together to get one working. Missile Command, Space Invaders and Centipede all work great. Buzzing along the bottom of the screen with the ball control is killer for Space Invaders.

 

A game of Missile Command really illustrates the accuracy you can get on the 5200 with the Trakball working right.

 

It's a bummer Megamania and a few other games weren't Trak-friendly. It seriously adds a lot to the games.

 

If the joysticks for the 5200 worked as well as the Trakball, I think the 5200 would have been a worthy follow up to the 2600. When you see how well analog CAN work on the system, it just shows that the joysticks were a decent idea - just poorly executed.

 

I did manage to acquire a Competition Pro joystick that works as well, but it seems very bulky and uncomfortable to use. Way better than the stock controllers though! I can actually play Berzerk without running into walls!

 

Trakball - A

Competition Pro - B-

 

It is nice to be able to play a game without the controller fighting your every move!

Edited by Amityville315
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Try it with Tempest or Xari Arena next!

 

It also works with the RealSports sports games and even Pole Position.

 

If you're on Facebook, join the Trak-Bombers group. We're all Trak-Ball fans there and Dan Kramer, the creator of Atari's consumer Trak-Ball controllers, is an Admin and active participant in the group.

 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/trakbombers/

Edited by Lynxpro
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Lynx,

 

I'd love to join but I'm not on Facebook. Dan Kramer did a great job on this though - definitely a plus to owning a 5200!

 

How does Pengo work with it?

 

I gotta check out Xari Arena as well. I have Tempest but I was a little disappointed with it. Maybe I'll give it another shot...

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Seems to work fine, but as mentioned, not ideal. Button one (left) shoots on Defender and button two (right) does the smart bombs, but it is uncomfortable to make the reach for the right button. I see what you mean about the design for ambidextrous players. Like the trak ball in a way...

 

I've thought about rewiring it so both buttons were on the left but might just hold out for a masterplay setup or the perfect "custom" controller.

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AA member atariguy1021 offers a MasterPlay clone. You can send him a PM when your ready to make your purchase.

 

http://atariage.com/forums/topic/244698-atari-5200-masterplay-clone-with-paddle-mode/?hl=%2Bmasterplay+%2Bclone&do=findComment&comment=3468642

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